In the last quarter of 1906, Madras (now Chennai) was hit by the worst financial crisis the city was ever to suffer. Of the three best-known British commercial names in 19th century Madras, one crashed; a second had to be resurrected by a distress sale; and the third had to be bailed out by a benevolent benefactor. Arbuthnot & Co, which failed, was considered the soundest of the three. Parry's (now EID Parry), may have been the earliest of them and Binny & Co.'s founders may have had the oldest associations with Madras, but it was Arbuthnot, established in 1810, that was the city's strongest commercial organisation in the 19th Century. A key figure in the bankruptcy case for Arbuthnot's was the Madras lawyer, V. Krishnaswamy Iyer who founded the Indian bank which was an offshoot of nationalistic fervour and the Swadeshi movement, when the then British Arbuthnot Bank collapsed and the Indian Bank emerged. Mr V. Krishnaswamy Iyer solicited the support of the Nagarathar Chettiars authored by Mr. Ramasamy Chettiar, who was Annamalai Chettiar's elder brother. Sri V. Krishnaswamy Iyer and Mr. Ramasamy Chettiar were one of the first directors of Indian Bank. Later on in 1915, Mr. Annamalai Chettiar was inducted into the board of the Indian Bank. It commenced operations on 15 August 1907 with its head office in Parry's Building, Parry Corner, Madras.
Today, Indian Bank is an Indian state-owned financial services company established in 1907 and headquartered in Chennai, India. It has 20,661 employees, 2594 branches and is one of the top performing public sector banks in India. It has overseas branches in Colombo and Jaffna in Sri Lanka, and in Singapore, and 223 correspondent banks in 71 countries. Since 1969 the Government of India has owned the bank.